Tip 2. Using photographic references

Anthony O'Keefe Uncategorized 0 Comments

The thing to remember when using photographs as references for your paintings is that the camera does not see the world in the same way as you and I. If you want to paint pictures that captures the way we see the world you need to understand and compensate for these failings. In my opinion the main failings and a way to compensate are:

1. The camera has one lens, we have two. The brain combines the two images from the eyes which produces soft edges. Understand and use soft edges.

2. The camera sees in one plane, we can see in multiple planes at the same time. Electronic photographs can give you the option to look onto the photos high lights and into the dark areas to some extent, Photoshop is a great too to help. In this way combine 3, 4 or 5 different settings so you can fully “see” what’s there.

3.The camera cannot reproduce the endless variety of colour that we can see. Observe real life and see Tip 1 on contours which will help introduce a verity of colour, the practice, practice, practice.

4. We can only focus on one thing at a time, the camera is able to put everything into focus. Decide on what the main object is and put this into sharp focus and then gently reduce the sharpness and vibrancy as you move away from the focal point. In a portrait it is the eye closest that needs to be the most in focus.

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